Week 3 was an exciting one in the WCC, filled with some nice wins, heartbreaking losses, and one team losing a key player. We continued to see a lot of shuffling between the four and ten spots in the rankings. Pacific reclaimed their week one spot at number four after a win over Fresno State this past week. At the bottom of the rankings, Santa Clara was unable to get any respect from our voters, falling from a two-way tie for 7th last week to 10th this week, after a 15-point loss to Notre Dame last Friday.
Gonzaga remains a top our power ranking this week, but for the first time this season they did not capture all the first place votes. The 11th-ranked Zags grabbed a 90-74 win over Washington State last Wednesday before heading off to Hawaii for the Maui Invitational. Gonzaga suffered a disappointing 84-79 loss to an impressive Dayton squad in their first game in Maui on Monday. A win against Dayton would have advanced the Zags to a game with 18th-ranked and given them a chance at a championship game match-up with 8th-ranked Syracuse, so the loss also has a negative effect on Gonzaga's strength of schedule. The Zags rebounded from the Dayton loss with a crushing 113-81 win over Chaminade last night. Kevin Pangos continued his outstanding play for Gonzaga, putting in 27 points in both the win versus Washington State and the loss to Dayton. The Zags will be back in action in tonight versus Arkansas in the Maui Invitational 5th place game.
After a heartbreaking 90-88 loss to 21st-ranked Iowa State at the Marriott Center last Wednesday night, the Cougars rebounded with a tough fought victory on Monday over Texas in the semi-finals of the CBE Hall of Fame Classic. BYU would fall to 12th-ranked Wichita State in the championship game last night due in large part to a poor second half shooting performance by the Cougars. Tyler Haws carried BYU to victory over Texas with 23 second half points, but the Cougars' star was noticeable absent for BYU in the two losses going a combined 9 of 34 (26 percent) from the field versus Iowa State and Wichita State.
Saint Mary's and Pacific are quietly off to strong starts this year. While the Gaels and Tigers haven't faced the level of competition the Zags and Cougars have, they are winning games and are the only remaining unbeatens in the WCC. The Gaels' toughest test in non-conference play won't come until they face Boise State on December 14th. The Tigers will have a chance to prove themselves against top competition Friday as they head to Eugene, Oregon for a match-up with 14th-ranked Oregon in the Global Sports Challenge.
The San Francisco Dons suffered a huge loss to their roster this week as they announced senior point guard Cody Doolin will forego the remainder of his senior season for personal reasons. Doolin is averaging 13 points per game and currently leads San Francisco with a 7 assists per game average. The Dons are struggling early this season and the loss of Doolin is a strong blow to any chances San Francisco had at competing when WCC conference play rolls around.
WCC Hoops Power Rankings: Week 3
Week 3 voters (8 total): Slipper Still Fits writers, Peter Woodburn and Zach Bell, and Vanquish the Foe writers, Jordan Edwards, Kevin Kennedy, Kevin Schaefer, Nate Kennedy, Nate Mathis, and Michael Murray.